Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

The Faraway Tree #2

The Magic Faraway Tree

Rate this book
Jo, Bessie and Fanny take their cousin Rick on an adventure he'll never forget to the magic Faraway Tree, where he meets Moon-Face, Silky the fairy and Saucepan Man, and visits all the different lands at the top of the Faraway Tree. Like the Land of Spells, the crazy Land of Topsy-Turvy, and the land of Do-As-You-Please, where the children ride a runaway train!

177 pages, Paperback

First published January 1, 1943

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Enid Blyton

4,525 books5,554 followers
See also:
Ένιντ Μπλάιτον (Greek)
Enida Blaitona (Latvian)
Энид Блайтон (Russian)
Inid Blajton (Serbian)
Енід Блайтон (Ukrainian)

Enid Mary Blyton (1897 - 1968) was an English author of children's books.

Born in South London, Blyton was the eldest of three children, and showed an early interest in music and reading. She was educated at St. Christopher's School, Beckenham, and - having decided not to pursue her music - at Ipswich High School, where she trained as a kindergarten teacher. She taught for five years before her 1924 marriage to editor Hugh Pollock, with whom she had two daughters. This marriage ended in divorce, and Blyton remarried in 1943, to surgeon Kenneth Fraser Darrell Waters. She died in 1968, one year after her second husband.

Blyton was a prolific author of children's books, who penned an estimated 800 books over about 40 years. Her stories were often either children's adventure and mystery stories, or fantasies involving magic. Notable series include: The Famous Five, The Secret Seven, The Five Find-Outers, Noddy, The Wishing Chair, Mallory Towers, and St. Clare's.

According to the Index Translationum, Blyton was the fifth most popular author in the world in 2007, coming after Lenin but ahead of Shakespeare.

See also her pen name Mary Pollock

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
19,452 (54%)
4 stars
9,780 (27%)
3 stars
4,898 (13%)
2 stars
1,201 (3%)
1 star
625 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 867 reviews
Profile Image for Luffy.
938 reviews703 followers
August 11, 2020
I feel quite fine and have a great feeling of self satisfaction, because I reread one of the best Children's books that I've read. Enid Blyton books don't have much depth, but the author knows about storytelling. How nice it is to know the English language, and come across such gems as The Faraway Tree trilogy.

To summarize, the Faraway Tree is a magic tree where magical beings live. Also, at the top of the tree a ladder leads the climber into whatever land it is therein. Our adventurers Jo, Bessie, Fanny and their cousin Dick mingle with the magic folk, and go up the ladder with mixed results.

Sometimes even the benign lands are full of unlooked for dangers. All things considered, I think the kids have more trouble than fun. But the fun is usually a unique experience. I've been an avid reader of Enid Blyton since I was a kid. At that time, she was the best author available to me. But I think even the Narnia books, which I read later, aren't superior to whatever magical themed books Enid Blyton wrote.
Profile Image for Mark Lawrence.
Author 76 books50.6k followers
December 30, 2021
Fanny waited a whole book for Dick and I'm happy to report he turns up in book 2.

Or Franny and Rick as the characters have been renamed.

Now my MAJOR COMPLAINT! **stamps foot!**

Cousin Rick comes to stay: "He is going to stay quite a long time because his mother is ill and can't look after him,"says the children's mother. (this is a quote, the stuff below is artistic license)

So, point 1. Rick's mother VERY ill. Remember this, it will become important in a few sentences.

Later in the book the children's mother (sister or sister-in-law to Rick's mother) falls ill. Calamity! She has been in bed for a few days. What can be done? The children flock up the Faraway Tree and beseech their magical friends for aid. "Fret not!" says Moonface. "The Land of Magic medicines will be here ... oh, about now." And they all charge up the ladder. Fending off pixies selling medicine for 'bad legs', ugly eyebrows' and shit like that they home in on a goblin who is offering 'Get Well' medicine which seems to make the rest of this land largely irrelevant. Really he should sit at the top of the ladder thrusting bottles of the stuff on visitors and telling them they can piss off now.

Anyway... the kids head home, give mum the 'Get Well' medicine and she gets better. Everyone is so pleased. "I'm so pleased, Aunt Polly!" Rick declares. Hoorah! But what's this? Aunt P discovers there is some 'Get Well' medicine left. "That's handy," she says and shoves in in a cupboard. "If anyone else gets sick might need that..."

WTF? Hello? Why is Rick here at all for all these weeks? His mother is desperately sick and can't look after him... Well never mind. Fuck her. We won't even mail her a bottle of this stuff. Sucks to be her.

... Moving on.... Note how book 2 has substantially more ratings than book 1 since it actually has 'Faraway Tree' in the title.

Not so much to report about book 2. In the 4 years since book 1 (1939) Enid seems to have come up with no new ideas. Although it was interesting to see the addition of Google buns to the weird food list (centred on pop cakes and toffee shocks) - was this the first popular appearance of the word 'Google'? I have no idea... Essentially this book is a continuation of the formula from book 1, a succession of good lands coming to the top of the tree mixed with the occasional troublesome ones.

This time Saucepan Man's mishearing doesn't have to carry the full weight of things going wrong as Rick/Dick's greediness is there to share the load. No good will come of him eating doorknockers, mark my words!

Saucepan Man's deafness is still a source of hilarity though. "Man? I thought you said ham!" How we laughed...

The big threat this book is from the land of tempers, two of its denizens escaping and taking over Moonface and Silky's houses. Where have our friends vanished to meantime?

It's worth noting that EB's imagination delivers a rather harsh world where the highs are pretty high (whatever you want) and the lows without mercy (lose your temper in the land of tempers and you're stuck there FOREVER!). The land of tempers invokes a fire & brimstone / eternal damnation view of sin.

Additionally it's worth noting that the children have very little by way of imagination themselves. Offered magic wishes they squander them on things like "I'd like a big chocolate cake!" rather than "I'd like the power to create cakes at will." or better "I'd like to be a powerful sorcerer." or "World peace and an end to disease, cheers!"

Celyn enjoyed me reading it to her. It's a great book for younger children - plenty to smile about. Easy to follow. And above all cheerful/upbeat if you don't think about it too hard.

Lands in this book:
The Land of Topsy Turvy
The Land of Spells
The Land of Dreams
The Land of Do-As-You-Please
The Land of Toys
The Land of Goodies
The Land of the Old Woman
The Land of Magic Medicines
The Land of Tempers
The Land of Presents
The Land of Birthdays

Join my Patreon
Join my 3-emails-a-year newsletter #prizes

Profile Image for Dannii Elle.
2,009 reviews1,397 followers
April 6, 2021
Rereading a childhood favourite can sometimes prove hazardous. Often, what so appealed to our younger selves we later find riddled with plot holes, become distanced from the young protagonists, or find them just generally unsuited for an adult readership. For this reason I had stayed away from my once beloved Enid Blyton, for so long.

The Faraway Tree series were particular favourites of mine however, and I had been hankering to revisit them for some time. I knew I was taking the risk of marring my rose-tinted memories of this series but decided to proceed, regardless.

It was with much relief that I found the delight and awe so often felt on early readings, as soon as I opened the very first page. This series is just an absolute joy to behold! Of course there is an element of predictability to the events and the safety of the characters is continually ensured, but the whimsical beauty of the setting, the hilarious anecdotes from the characters, the soaring feats of bravery, the fantastically odd beings, and the wonderful (and sometimes not so) lands visited, all made this an utterly charming read and escape from reality for my my pre-teen, my teenage, and my (now) adult self.
Profile Image for Richard Derus.
2,860 reviews1,901 followers
May 24, 2020
Really, how could anyone not enjoy this trippy wartime (published in 1943) tale of escape to magical places with truly interesting residents? The Faraway Tree was introduced in The Enchanted Wood, which I didn't know before picking this one up. I don't know if I'm missing some crucial stuff by not having read that book first, but I never felt more than the ordinary sense of needing to know what was going on that comes with reading a new-to-me book.

What happens in the course of the kids' adventures in the various faraway fairy realms was fun...I ***really*** want to visit the Land of Topsy-Turvy!...but not a patch on the fact that these childrens' mother/aunt, the Responsible Party of Record for their safety, blithely lets them go off for an entire day, no idea where they are, and when they come home and share their adventures, she doesn't reach for the phone to get a shrink STAT but indulgently laughs and allows them to do it again! (After they finish all their chores, of course. Which they do uncomplainingly. Which is how you know this is a novel.)

And then, then!, she allows one of them to SPEND THE NIGHT in parts unknown to her! Now times were different in 1943, but that one's just not on. No responsible adult has *ever* let a kid spend the night somewhere without knowing 1) where and 2) who and 3) when and how Sweetums will be going there and coming home.

So while this is a fun little fantasy of life in worlds where people are called Moon-Face and Dame Washalot and trees grow the fruits that will best suit your needs at that moment to a kid, to a grandpa it's an astoundingly different and really quite uneasy-making fantasy.

I decided to read this book because Henry Bird, of the 10th season of The Great British Bake Off, made a showstopper cake using this book as its theme. He is, or was depending on when you're reading this review, a literature student at university, and this book was one of his childhood favorites. So why not, it's only $3.99 on the Kindle, and getting out of my usual literary haunts is always a good idea.

I didn't love it, but I didn't expect to; in fact I liked it quite a bit more than I expected to and that is a wonderful thing for a reader in his seventh decade of reading.
1 review1 follower
October 17, 2012
This was my favourite book when I was younger because it’s such an enchanting story. The story takes place in an enchanted forest in which a gigantic magical tree grows - the enormous "Faraway Tree". The tree is so tall that its top branches reach into the clouds and it is wide enough to contain small houses carved into its trunk. Three children find the tree in the enchanted forest, which is the start of their adventure. They meet lots of new friends in different parts of the tree like moon face, who has a slippery slide in this house and saucepan man, who wears saucepans over his body and is really funny. They get to visit lots of different lands like topsy-turvy land and Do-as-you-please land. The book is exciting and full of magic.
I think the book is a brilliant book for creating imagination of all the different lands and provides escapism from real life in its fantasy world. It is a magical enchanting book and provokes the imagination in the use of language and descriptions of the tree.
Profile Image for Kerri.
970 reviews344 followers
June 6, 2021
While I don't love this one quite as much as the first, I still enjoyed revisiting this old favourite. I still need to read the third to read to check, but so far my memory is mostly correct that the events from the end of the previous are almost entirely dropped. Beth mentions her doll, but Frannie's wings aren't mentioned, and neither is Joe's pony -- the pony that somehow climbed down the ladder of the Faraway Tree and then went down the slippery-slip, something I still can't get my head around. What happened to the pony?

A little confusingly in this book, the children's mother appears to know about the tree with magical lands above it, and is neither surprised, concerned or shows any interest in going along to see for herself. One of the things I find stretches belief the most is when the adult characters believe in the magical happenings, but show no curiosity about them.

Slightly annoying cousin Rick (renamed from Dick) arrives in this one. He was less troublesome than I remembered, but still a little irritating. One the biggest plot-hole moments stems from Rick. He is sent to stay with his family because his mother is very ill and will be for a long time. At some point during this book, the children's own mother falls ill. They travel to a land that gives them a medicine for her. She recovers quickly, leaving half a bottle of this magical medicine which she then puts aside incase they might ever need it -- why not send it/take it to her sister? It makes even less sense than a pony using a slide.

My other gripe is Saucepan Man. The children observe, "Saucepan was always very funny when he heard things wrong" -- I disagree. This joke was wearing thin in the first book. By this point I am rolling my eyes every time he hears wrong and causes yet another disaster. Still, in fairness, I do think I found this amusing when I was younger.

Also, when they go the Land of Goodies, the rules are odd. They eat pieces of the marshmallow fence with no trouble, but when Rick eats someone's peppermint knocker he is punished. Why is a fence acceptable, but not a knocker? A fence is just as much private property as a door knocker.

So, those are my gripes, but overall it's a fun book. The illustrations are lovely, this time by Georgina Hargreaves.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Caity.
204 reviews40 followers
March 19, 2022
What can I say. This book is the reason I read. When I was 5 or 6 my nan sat down with me one afternoon and started to read this story. I feel in love immediately. In fact it became a ritual for my nan and I to read every afternoon until we finished the book. I looked forward to it every afternoon. If you want to get a kid to read, this is definitely the book. It will always be in my heart and someday I wish to read the story to my kids and possibly grand kids and take them to a truly magical world.
Profile Image for Michelle.
171 reviews100 followers
February 25, 2012
Five stars out of sheer sentimentality. I loved this book as a child and have read it countless times after finding it at a garage sale. I have so many pleasant memories reading this book, it will never leave my bookshelf.
Profile Image for Clouds.
228 reviews628 followers
March 1, 2014
My review-soon shelf is getting out of control again - been finishing more books than I've been reviewing! - best crack-on...

So I didn't love this one at all. Part of that's personal, and part of that's critical. Let's do the personal first...

When my son was a tiny baby and my wife was on maternity leave from work, we had a lovely bedtime routine. While Fin had his last feed I would read him a story. We worked our way through Winnie-the-Pooh and Wind in the Willows amongst others. I loved it. I'd never really read stories aloud before, and it was a really special time, every evening. It didn't matter if there were chores to do or friend visiting, bedtime story always took priority.

And then, eventually, my wife had to go back to work, and life immediately became busier and more complex. Frequently, only one of us was available at a time to put Fin to bed - and I found it hard to read him a story while also giving him his bottle and the lovely routine slipped away (and I missed it).

Then my wife changed work and we had more opportunity for bedtime story again - but now Fin was older and didn't want to lay back to hear the story, he wanted picture books he could look at with me. So the classics have been put aside, until he's old enough to want to listen to the words, and understand them all.

We were halfway through The Magic Faraway Tree when the routine changed, and it then took forever to finish it. I can't help but feel a little sad, for a special time which has passed, when I think of this book. So that's my personal reason for the low score.

With my critical hat... I just don't like this series very much, and honestly don't think it's very good!

They were my wife's choice to read as her childhood favourites... but I find them repetitive and boring, with inconsequential action, no character depth and only a thin veneer of 'charming' imagination as their saving grace.

After two books, I still can't tell you the difference between the two sisters. After two books, I still couldn't give a damn if The Magic Faraway Tree got chopped and carved into wooden haemorrhoid applicators (as seen on QI). Moon Face is still creepy as frak.

After this I read: The Midnight Mayor
Profile Image for B the BookAddict.
300 reviews657 followers
September 18, 2013
I read this book via Skype to my 7yr old niece; happy to say she loved it as much as I did when I was her age. Amazing how many times I have read this as a child, probably well into double digits. Reading it out loud brought back all the magic I had originally felt; a much loved story. A must for all children! 4★
Profile Image for Kirsten.
356 reviews10 followers
April 4, 2011
Is this the book that turned me into such a bookworm? I just read it to my six year old son and at times to my 39 year old husband. We all loved it. It was the first chapter book Ethan had the patience for. I asked him his fave character and of all characters it was the Angry Pixie. Would never have picked it. The humour is accessible to all which I don't always find as Ethan has yet to pick up references needed for jokes generally. But he loved all the descriptions of Saucepan's misunderstandings due to deafness. I love the idea of fantastical friends living in a tree and visiting weird and wonderful lands. Will take a bit of a break from it but will have to read the other two in the series. Here's hoping it turns Ethan into a bookwork too, although I may have lost him to sport...
Profile Image for Rosemary Atwell.
352 reviews19 followers
August 23, 2020
The Faraway Tree books were another absolutely favourite childhood series and no wonder - these often hilarious - and slightly psychedelic - adventures showcase an astonishing imagination in full flight. ‘The Magic Faraway Tree’ might not be a literary masterpiece, but Blyton’s sure, confident storytelling builds worlds of enchantment that are quite irresistible.
Profile Image for Rowena.
500 reviews2,435 followers
December 16, 2020
One of my favourite childhood books.How I wished I could visit those magical lands at the top of the magic faraway tree, eat all the weird and wonderful food they described, and be friends with a fairy and a man with a moon-shaped face!
Profile Image for Stephanie ((Strazzybooks)).
978 reviews95 followers
March 27, 2018
I read this book with an intermediate ELL student. They actually introduced me to the series, as I somehow had never heard of it. It was a dated, yet charming little tale of children who have a magic tree in their backyard that has rotating lands at the top, like The Land of Presents and the Land of Do-As-You-Please. Some parts were slow and some parts were simply enchanting, and now I want to visit a little market in the sky with a tiny man who has the moon for a face.
A side note: it'll be super fun to try to explain that we shouldn't say 'queer' or 'dick' quite as loosely as they do in this book.
Profile Image for Kavita.
755 reviews362 followers
December 27, 2018
In this one, Cousin Dick (don't joke!) comes to stay with the three children because his mother is very ill. He's a bit greedy, and that's really his besetting sin. The three decide to take him to their favourite wood and introduce him to the people living there.

My edition was missing a couple of chapters as the last two lands 'Land of Tempers' and 'Land of Presents' do not appear. Wonder why?! At any rate, this second book appears to be just a filler and the adventures the children go on are not as interesting or fun as in the first book. There also appears to be very little new happening in the Enchanted Wood, no threats, no conflicts. Maybe it's there in the missing chapters? For me, I guess, this remains a charming little old-world story for children.

I enjoyed the Land of Dreams and the Land of Toys the most in this book.
Profile Image for Shabneez.
100 reviews14 followers
March 14, 2017
I've read 2 out of the 3 books of The faraway tree.

I read the first one years ago. At an age that allowed me to still being hopeful that such a tree exists. I loved it so much as a kid that I once dreamed I had gone up the tree. lol. In my memories, the book was huge and colourful. I came across it in the library some time back. It made me smile to realise that it wasn't such a big book after all. ^^"
Profile Image for Skip.
3,246 reviews394 followers
December 17, 2018
Second book in a series by Enid Blyton, published in 1943. Essentially, the continuing adventures of Joe, Bessie and Fanny in the magical tree, its zany inhabitants, and the various lands that can be accessed at the top of the tree, including adventures therein. They are joined by a cousin named Rick, who seems incapable of staying out of trouble. Also, Moonface really should lock the door to his house. A bit simplistic, probably because of its age.
Profile Image for David Sarkies.
1,779 reviews300 followers
November 22, 2015
Return to the Fairy World
11 March 2012

Well, I have now read this book, though I will continue to do what I normally do when I wish to revisit a review and that is to keep my older one below (normally because there are still things there that are relevant despite me having reviewed this book without reading it in like 25 years). Now I can also legitimately add it to my reading list as I have now read the book as opposed to my Dad reading it to me when I was six.

Once again the adult world seems to hang in the background. We have a new child enter the story, Dick, who was sent out to the country because his mother was sick. I initially thought that this was a euphamism for the time when British children were sent out to the country to avoid the blitz, but I do not think that is the case. I suspect Blyton is simply creating a device that could be plausible in any situation, despite the book being written in 1943. Anyway, in Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, Lewis is quite specific about the children going to the country to escape the blitz though it does tend to lock the story into the early 1940s as opposed to keeping it timeless as Blyton does.

It is also noticeable that the family is self sufficient (and mother and father do not have names) but much of that self-sufficience does rely upon the existence of the Enchanted Wood and the Faraway Tree. I mentioned previously about how this could have been a reflection of the Depression in the earlier book, and in this book Dad seems to play a really minor role (Mum is more noticeable) but we do note that everybody tends to work around the house tending to the garden among other things. I also previously questioned whether there was anything that the adults would have seen in the Enchanted Wood, but in both stories we do have characters from the wood coming out to the cottage. Mother even watches the children return home flying on a table.

I should mention a bit about the children, the main characters, and maybe some of the characters who live in the tree. The children do not seem to be fully fleshed characters. I do get the impression that Jo is the oldest, and to the extent the wisest, so takes a leadership role, and Bessie is the youngest. I also get the impression that Dick is rash and does not think things through, but the children are all willing to learn from their mistakes, and thus grow (though occasionally we do see a rather nasty side to the children). The characters in the tree are a little more developed, but they are also fairy creatures. Of the fairies the one I dislike the most is Saucepanman.

Don't get me wrong, Saucepanman is a unique and interesting character, but he just really annoys me. He seems to be incredibly stupid, in addition to being partially deaf. Also he seems to cause more problems than solved, though the children seem to love him nonetheless. Moonface seems to be the wisest, though once again seems to defer wisdom to the children. Silky seems to be a pretty face that simply hangs around but has little in the way of personality. Ironically, it is the angry pixie, Mrs Washalot, and Watzisname, that seem to have the fuller characters, probably because they are flawed and have a mean streak.

Once again the children go on five adventures, four of them being them stumbling around the fairyworld getting into trouble and then finding their way out of it. There is no real antagonist and no storyarc connecting the book together. However, also like the first book, we have an invasion of the Faraway Tree that the children must step in to solve. In the first book it was the Red Goblins (who wanted a magic spell), this time it is the Land of Temper (or temper tantrums) where a couple of inhabitants imprison our friends in the tree and the children must rescue them.

Blyton's world of the Enchanted Wood is a realm of very high magic, though it is noticeable that most of the magic occurs within the wood, though all of the characters in the wood are magical in one way or another. This is obviously the nature of fairy tales as opposed to more adult orientated fantasy novels. Granted, many of the fantasy novels are set in a high fantasy world, but magic seems to take on a different form. The term high and low magic tends to refer to how common magic is in a world. A low magic world would be something like Song of Fire and Ice (Game of Thrones) though some could also point to our world. However, while I would agree that our world is certainly not high magic, my position is that it is not a no-magic world either. I guess the closest that I have seen to what magic in our world could be like would be the Eric series, however Melnibone does seem to be more magical in other senses than our world is (Melnibone would actually be considered a high magic world, but the aspects of demon summoning that permeate the world reflect some of the ideas that come out of real world literature).

The First Review
8 March 2012

I don't really know if I can truly say that I read this book because technically I didn't, my Dad read it to me when I was really, really young, and while I cannot remember all that much about this book, I can remember that I was enchanted by it. Personally, I really cannot say whether I should include a book that was read to me, but in this case I will simply because Blyton is one of those authors that stands out from the rest as a true children's author. There have been children's books around for a long time (though I wonder if the Grimm's fairy tales were originally for kids) but here we have an author that would stand the test of time.

Blyton was never really a fantasy writer, she actually wrote a lot of other stories that were more like mystery stories for kids, however here we have a fairy tale about a magical tree that upon climbing to the top you find yourself in a new magical land. However, it wasn't just the top but also the adventure of climbing the tree as well because I remember there were lots of characters who lived in this tree.

As I said, I cannot truly remember the plot, even if there was a plot to this story. It could easily have been an excuse to go on a magical journey and visit magical places. It is interesting because looking at when it was written it was not really a time when people could have gone on holidays. It was the middle of World War II, travelling outside of the country was dangerous, and one could not go to any of the wonderful places in Europe. Travelling by sea was dangerous as well since the German U-boats had no qualms in targeting passenger liners, so instead of travelling the world, one would end up having to travel in their imagination.

I am probably reading too much into this, but it was a book that I remember being read to me as a child, and it is a real shame that I suspect that I no longer have it, however, what I might do is I might try digging through our back shed later on to see what is actually been hidden up there. Maybe, if I am lucky, I will discover that we still have these books up there gathering dust. That would be really good in my opinion.
Profile Image for Sheree.
572 reviews107 followers
April 24, 2009
This was my all-time favourite book growing up & unbeknownst to me at the time, my first experience with the fantasy genre. As a child I was so enchanted with the story, I believed the Enchanted Forest and the Magic Faraway Tree were actually real.

Only a few pages in and this delightful story came rushing back, along with the magical, wishful feelings experienced as a child. Fanny, Dick, Bessie & Jo, Moon-face, Silky, Saucepan, Dame Wash-a-lot & the Angry Pixie became old friends once again and the lands at the top of the Faraway Tree re-ignited my love of Enid Blyton. The Land of Do-As-You-Please, The Land of Goodies & The Land of Presents must surely be every child's dream

The Magic Faraway Tree and other stories by Enid Blyton will always hold a special place in my heart.
Profile Image for [ J o ].
1,936 reviews426 followers
February 2, 2017
Read as part of The Infinite Variety Reading Challenge, based on the BBC's Big Read Poll of 2003.

This was so imaginative-up to a point. I thought so much more could have been made of it all-a tree that leads to different lands? Yes please. Unfortunately, all of the lands were soft, playful, self-serving, twee. I didn't enjoy how completely devoid of any particular adventurous danger the adventures actually were. I didn't enjoy the obviousness of how it all turned out. I didn't find it flowed from one adventure to the next, except in terms of "it happened on this day, then the day after..." Whilst I understand that's how kids live, it felt dull to me.

Sadly, I think if I had read these as a child I would have absolutely adored them. I can imagine that I would now be looking upon them with such wonderful nostalgia I'd be petrified to re-read them as an adult-and maybe wouldn't ever, as the memory of them would be sufficient.

Happily, however, I still want to read more Blyton. Perhaps not this particular series, but certainly the Famous Five. Certainly. Lashings of it.

Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Pinterest | Shop | Etsy
Profile Image for Amirtha Shri.
241 reviews54 followers
May 8, 2019
Despite the fact that I've grown to look for meaning and depth in books for kids, The Magic Faraway Tree remains one of my favourite Children's books. This is because of the sheer load of creativity, entertainment and enchanting storytelling.

A few things I liked in particular about this Enid Blyton book are that the characters are not forced to play parts (Franny has no role simply because her character is quite mundane and might rub off on the story, similarly Whatzisname has not much to him than his funny name and he remains a side character), the mother is actually introduced to this world of magic and she is very accommodating, and the author has clearly squeezed dry the scope of the moving lands above the Faraway Tree by having exciting and dangerous ones (sometimes both), I also liked the forced closure when Enid Blyton tells you to leave the kids alone for now and live your own life.

There were a few loose ends like the Get Well medicine and Silky not using her fairy powers but I think I can live with that.
Profile Image for Narmeen.
487 reviews36 followers
December 12, 2020
The magic faraway tree, can I come visit thee?
I'll bring my imaginary friends along with me
we'll have some biscuits with our teas
and swim in pools made of police tears.

A friend of mine (Afreen) said this was her favorite childhood book and oh my I can see why that is so.
This book is full of imagination and magical wonders that a child would love to get lost into, I would definitely wish my future (at the moment non existent) kids to read this book!

As a child I always ran away from people who recommended Enid Blyton for 2 reasons:
1. I wasn't a reader & a lazy butt.
2. It seemed too boring to me as a child.

I was clearly wrong and didn't even make an effort to try to read it, I'm sure it would have had an even bigger impact in my life as a reader if I read this at a younger age. My first Enid Blyton and very likely not the last.
Profile Image for Dee.
25 reviews6 followers
June 12, 2013
ahhhh i wanna plant a tree to take me far far away into a world where i can buy unlimited amounts of books for FREE.
onto the review :P this book i have to say was my childhood, well the tv show was. i remember reading the book and my mouth watering at the cakes that exploded with honey mmmh. tbh this is a magical fun read, something you can treasure. a book in which you can see the development in childrens stories, a classic if i must say!
Profile Image for Kelly.
251 reviews32 followers
March 26, 2017
Well this book was a mess! Missing 33 pages and repeated another 30 through the book!! It's so different reading your favourite childhood book as an adult. It was ok, it was the nostalgia for me that nade me love the experience. I will buy another with all the pages in and read it to my son for him to enjoy.
Profile Image for Thalía L/A.
112 reviews3 followers
September 24, 2017
Sin duda uno de mis libros favoritos de la infancia, lo releía una y otra vez!! Eso sí, un fallo gordo que le veo hoy en día es que es un poco sexista en cuanto a los roles de género de los personajes. Pero bueno, creo que la gran mayoría de los libros de la época lo eran.
Profile Image for J. Boo.
701 reviews20 followers
January 12, 2021
The trio of children from "The Enchanted Wood" are joined by their cousin Rick, somewhat impetuous and too fond of cakes for his own good.

Not quite as joyous as the first book, "The Enchanted Wood", but still a lot of fun. Enid Blyton was a maelstrom of ideas, and the format of this particular universe -- a magic tree which had at its top temporary doorways to an infinite number of small worlds -- is absolutely fitted to her strengths.

The children, in this volume, visit The Land of Topsy-Turvy, The Land of Toys, The Land of Goodies, The Land of Spells, The Land of Tempers, The Land of Presents, and many others.

Unfortunately, this edition has been as absurdly modernized as the previous volume I've read. In one sense, this is to the good, as the most ridiculous changes are transparently obvious for older (and aware) readers.

Here, for example, a bunch of desserts (and a saucepan) have been dropped on the heads of various troublesome inhabitants of the lower branches of the tree.

'... anybody else up there playing tricks will get a fine scolding, too!' [said Watsizname.]
'A scolding!' said Dame Washalot's voice.
'A SCOLDING!' roared the Angry Pixie not far behind.

And later,

Then all three of them went for poor Moon-Face, who got a terrible scolding. He rolled over to the slippery-slip, and slid down it in a fright[....]

'I've had a scolding!' wept Moon-Face. ' They all scolded me [...] And now I'm afraid to go back because they will be waiting for me.'

Pretty sure this is "spanking" in the original, and that is how I will read it when I do so with my kids. Unfortunately, I doubt that, even warned of the changes, children would pick up on their own that Moon-Face and the others aren't cry-babies, but are facing child-comprehensible mild peril.

Additionally, in this 2017 version, the "modern" illustrations are slapdash, with the minimum possible amount of detail. The fact that the front cover has what seems to be a carefully drawn scene from the 1940s version just rubs salt on the wound.

This was in another big bag o' lit from a fellow children's literature aficionado with classic tastes. Ostensibly we trade off for the sake of the children, but I'm guessing we are both happy to have new old books available.
Profile Image for Alli.
132 reviews81 followers
November 24, 2015
I read an original version of this book, before the names were changed. I really don't think that the Author should be made to change the names of characters in a book because of the childish behavior of others.

That said this was a great read of a book from my childhood.

It is about the adventures of 4 children, who played out in the forest at the end of their garden (how many kids do that now-a-days?)
They had several different unusual forest friends, that contributed to their adventures.

There are a lot of morals represented in the books, for example the children weren't allowed to play until they had finished their jobs (the did seem to work hard too).
I noted that the only parent really mentioned in the book was 'Mother' and the father never contributed to the story.

I was thinking with all the different 'worlds' at the top of the Faraway tree, this book was a sci-fi book, the descriptions of the worlds and the characters in each world were simple so that kids imaginations could run away whilst reading.

It is a great kids book, that should be read with the youngsters of today.
Profile Image for Kirsty.
614 reviews104 followers
February 25, 2016
This series was a part of my childhood, my imagination would run wild to this series. This is the second book in the series and while you could read this series out of order and everything would make sense, I think you would get a lot more out of the series if you were to read it in the intended order.

I gave the first book in this series five stars, and that is what I've given this one too because I just can't fault it, or at least not the original version that doesn't have silly name changes.

In this second book, the children's cousin comes to visit them and they of course show him The Enchanted Wood and the Faraway Tree. Just like in the first book, the children have wonderful adventures and also have to work around the home and take care of their family before being able to go outside and play. I feel this sends a wonderful message to children who read this book and also helps them get carried away with their imaginations. I found this book just as enjoyable as an adult and so I can highly recommend this series to anyone.
Profile Image for Saloni ..
2 reviews3 followers
October 21, 2009
i have only enid blyton to thank for introducing to me the wonderful and fascinating world of books. i started pretty late but hers were the books which were a part of my childhood. the faraway tree, the wishing chair, the famous fives, secret sevens, mystery series, noddy series and the circuis books were and still are an all time favourite. somehow all my enid blytons are still kept tucked in a cloth in my cupboard ...i just seem unable to give them away.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 867 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.